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As these images show:

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Edit: Many of the stormtroopers appear to be left-handed in these images. Is this in reference to them being clones of Jango Fett (I'm sure I heard this somewhere)? Were the stormtrooper commanders identified as being non-clone by their predominantly right-handedness?

I am aware that an equal number of stormtroopers in other screens appear to be right-handed, but this is more than the ~10% of the normal distribution in the population. Are these all doctored mirror images?

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  • Out of universe, I suspect the answer is "because it looks better on film"
    – Valorum
    Jan 17, 2014 at 8:21
  • 1
    "Is this in reference to them being clones of Jango Fett (i'm sure I heard this somewhere)?" -- The clone troops used during the Clone Wars were all clones of Jango Fett. By the time A New Hope takes place and the Empire is using the storm troopers, that's not necessarily universally true.
    – Brian S
    Jan 17, 2014 at 15:18
  • @BrianS was jango fett left handed?
    – William
    Nov 22, 2016 at 1:13
  • 1
    Given that the same actor played about a dozen different stormtroopers, desert troopers, sandtroopers and commanders, it might be down to a single actor being left-handed.
    – Valorum
    Nov 16, 2017 at 13:28

3 Answers 3

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First of all, I doubt that there's a direct canonical explanation for this, as probably it's just a film matter.

However... we can guess that, although actually by the time of SW:ANH almost every stormtrooper isn't a clone, probably it's instruction is the same from the early Empire days, when the clones where left handed (I didn't know that) and trained to fight and shoot from a "left guard".

The use and design of firearms has a heavy component on the user handling: the placement of adjustment buttons, safes, exit scapes, etc... are different on a weapon designed for left-handed use than on a weapon designed for right-handed use.

We can assume that, if the whole original stormtrooper contingent was left handed, their weapons would be designed for their use with a "left guard"; so as more volunteers enlist and less clones are needed more right handed soldiers start to receive stormtrooper training and equipment, it's designed for left handed people and taught from left handed instructors.

On the long term we can assume that an army that builds originally from only left handed people will train all it's soldiers that way just for procedural efficiency.

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    This would explain the aiming precision of most stormtroopers.
    – Neil
    Jan 27, 2014 at 15:52
  • *know not knew.
    – William
    Nov 18, 2016 at 16:13
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It was actually down to the shape of the guns that were used in filming. Because of the construction, if they were held in the right hand, they banged against the breastplates used in the stormtroopers armour, so they had to be held left handed.

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By the time of SW:ANH, most of the stormtroopers are not clones - the Empire rapidly expanded its forces in the years after its formation, and also did not replace clonetroopers as they were killed or died.

So, the chances of any particular stormtrooper during the final rebellion being a clone of Jango Fett are pretty small.

It could just be that biology is a bit different in a Galaxy Far Far Away, and the incidence of left-handed humans is much higher.

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  • I seem to recall 1/3 ratio from somewhere? Jan 17, 2014 at 11:52

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